Looking for a respite of fresh air, spectacular views and a whole slew of bucket list items? A Kalispell getaway is the ideal escape from urban life — all the best highlights of a mountain vacation without the need to sacrifice modern amenities. Whether you’re planning daylong treks, wildflower picnics and campfire memories that follow you home to San Francisco, or guided tours through Glacier National Park followed by farm-to-table cuisine, visiting Kalispell delivers it all. Just make sure you have your bag packed right to get the most out of your vacation.
First things first: pack layers. Like most mountain climes, Kalispell’s temperatures fluctuate between day and night. Average summer daytime highs are in the low 80s but can feel much warmer in direct sunlight, and nights cool down to the mid-40s. Carry your long-sleeve shirt or light jacket to throw on over tees and tanks and be sure to bring at least one heavier sweater or jacket — you won’t want to miss out on stargazing.
The list below covers a number of other essentials to make planning for your trip easier, but keep in mind your particular activity plans and check the weather forecast before your flight.
Raincoat (up in the mountains, late afternoon showers are common)
Packable down or fleece jacket
Baseball cap or hat
Warm hat for cooler evenings
Hiking or tennis shoes
Water shoes or sandals for exploring rivers, along lakeshores and for boating
Camera — and its memory card, extra batteries and/or charger
Cellphone charger (only if you don’t want to get completely off the grid*)
And remember, Montana is still cowboy country — you can get away with jeans at most of Kalispell’s establishments.
*When visiting Glacier National Park, please be aware that it is a remote place with limited cellphone and internet connectivity. This lack of on-the-go communication makes planning ahead imperative. Generally, visitors will have cell reception in West Glacier up to Apgar Village. There is limited coverage in St. Mary. Reception greatly diminishes as you move away from these locations. Public Wi-Fi is available at Apgar Visitor Center and St. Mary Visitor Center.